Sheikh Hasina is the embodiment of balanced foreign policy

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is scheduled to visit China on a state visit from July 8 to

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Sheikh Hasina is the embodiment of balanced foreign policy

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is scheduled to visit China on a state visit from July 8 to 11.

The Prime Minister’s visit to China, two weeks after her visit to India, is being discussed in regional and international politics. Observing the regional and international politics, it can be clearly understood that China wants to be closely associated with Bangladesh as a partner in the development journey like other countries in South Asia. For situational reasons, the two regional emerging superpowers, China and India, have a close eye on neighboring countries. The two countries are trying to spread influence in neighboring countries including Bangladesh in various ways.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s government is moving forward for four consecutive terms by following the policy of ‘friendship to all, malice to none’ with the strategy of utilizing it. For this reason Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s recent visit to India and upcoming visit to China are of special significance in regional and international politics.

Such a situation is apparently seen as a milestone of harmony and camaraderie in regional and international politics. The issue can also be highlighted as a role model for establishing friendship in world politics. Due to global and regional reasons, India and China have a kind of competition to spread influence in neighboring countries including Bangladesh.

The Bangladesh Prime Minister's continued efforts to create a positive impact on regional politics by maintaining balanced relations with both countries. It can be said without a doubt that efforts to stabilize and strengthen Bangladesh’s relations with India and China will contribute to regional stability and economic integration.

We have noted that since the Awami League government came to power under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in 2009, Bangladesh has been maintaining such excellent ‘balanced relations’ with India and China. Sheikh Hasina government’s relationship with India is related to political and security issues. On the other hand, the relationship with China is purely economic.

The Prime Minister while answering a question at a press conference after his visit to India said that India is a real friend of Bangladesh and has a lot to learn from China. All in all, the Prime Minister’s policy of balance is clear. She wants and continues to pursue relations with both India and China, and Bangladesh also feels that China has no alternative to resolve Bangladesh’s economic tensions. There is no permanent friend or permanent enemy in politics. Therefore, it can be said that the politics of balance will leave a clear impression of foresight in the politics of Bangladesh. On the other hand, there is no doubt that the United States will look to the visit with its growing economic dependence on China. 

In various realities, the Prime Minister’s visit to China is deeply related to economic and trade issues and the development of regional-political relations. Bangladesh has already established itself as a dominant power in the larger Indo-Pacific region. Bangladesh is also considered as the second largest economically powerful country in South Asia. As a result, the major superpower states are working to strengthen bilateral relations with Bangladesh.

India wants Bangladesh to be with it in the Indo-Pacific. China hopes that Bangladesh will be with it. In the geo-political analysis, it is clear that the role of Bangladesh at the regional and international level is very significant. Over the past fifteen years, Bangladesh is on the rise in the global political-economic system through the unprecedented development under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

Bangladesh today stands tall in the world as a developing and emerging economy. Bangladesh is now considered as an important country even by the world leaders. Bangladesh is highly appreciated in the international arena due to its stable growth rate- overall economic development including industrial development, political maturity and geographical location. Bangladesh’s contribution to Southeast Asian politics is immense for strategic reasons.

The population of the Indo-Pacific countries is more than half of the global population. 58 percent of which are youth. Both in terms of workforce and consumers, the number are large. Economic growth here is two-thirds of the global economy. GDP amounts to 60 percent of global GDP. In addition, 65 percent of the world’s oceans are in the Indo-Pacific. In case of flat land that is 25 percent. Naturally, the attention of global superpowers is focused on this region. Bangladesh continues to make a positive contribution to the Indo-Pacific politics by maintaining close cordial relations with all, including friendly country India and development partner China, in facing regional security challenges.

In accordance with the rapid changes taking place in foreign politics, the foreign policy position of Bangladesh can be considered as one of the carriers of regional friendly and developmental activities. For this reason, along with the visit to India, the upcoming visit of the Prime Minister to China is going to make an important contribution to regional politics. In such a situation, the more balanced and economically Bangladesh-India, Bangladesh-China relations in neighboring politics are towards the development and progress of Bangladesh, the more it will be possible to improve the socio-economic, educational-cultural and quality of life of the people of our country. Therefore, the relationship of Bangladesh with other big states of the world including India and China by maintaining diplomatic balance will make the hand of the state administration of Bangladesh smoother in the coming days. Moreover, the Prime Minister’s visit to China this year will serve as a strong player in the country’s internal development as well as international and regional stable politics.

Credit: Dr. Sultan Mahmud

Author: Dr. Sultan Mahmud, Professor, Department of Political Science, Rajshahi University, Bangladesh


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